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Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Omaha, NE: Father Flanagan's Boys Town: Still Helping Wayward Boys ... And Girls

Boys Town
14100 Crawford St.
Boys Town, NE 68010
Phone: (402) 498-1300 or  (800) 625-1400
Prices: $$$$ (Free)
"There's a square mile in the Heartland of America where miracles happen. Despair and darkness are conquered by the promise of a bright future. Kids are saved and families are healed in our Village."
Boys Town hosts over 100,000 visitors from all over the world each year and subsists strictly on donations and the trust that Father Flanagan setup many years ago. Boys Town has also served girls since the 1970s, so the name is somewhat misleading in this day and age, but it is understandable why such an iconic the name has not been changed.

After entering the property, the first street on your left (follow the signs toward "Visitors Center") will take you to the Visitors Center and Gift Shop where you can get a map or CD audio guide to explore the village on your own or a Boys Town resident can give you a personal tour for a small fee ($4). 

Co-located with the Visitors Center is the Leon Myers Stamp Center where you will find the largest ball of stamps in the world as verified by Ripley's Believe It Or Not, a great collection of 1950s baseball cards, and buckets of stamps to rummage through to select your favorites for the small sum of one cent each.

Do not forget to add a donation to your transaction because 100% of donations go toward programs that benefit the residents and Boys Town operates solely by private donations. Head back out to Village Drive and turn left toward the Garden of the Bible, Hall of History, and Dowd Memorial Chapel, all near each other on the second roundabout you come to. 

The Hall of History is a great place to start by getting some background and history of Boys Town. After watching the free 15-minute video introducing you to Father Flanagan and Boys Town, explore the fabulous exhibits which include Spencer Tracy's  “Oscar” for his role in the movie "Boys Town",  and many of the other free and extremely well done exhibits.

The Garden of the Bible is a nice place to sit quietly for a few minutes if the weather is nice, then you can head across the street to Dowd Chapel where Father Flanagan's tomb is located and where masses are held each day for residents, employees, and visitors. The tomb is impressive with blue and green stained glass, giving the perception of being beneath the sea, and Father Flanagan's bronze sarcophagus sitting prominently in the middle.

A short drive further up the road is the Father Flanagan House, a beautifully restored two story home with period furniture and decor in addition to some of Father Flanagan's personal belongings. Like all of the exhibits, entry is free and it is well worth a visit.

We did not think much about Boys Town and only made the trip across town because we had a couple hours to spare before heading south to Villisca, Iowa (Villisca Axe Murder House) and St Joseph for a night at the Whiskey Mansion B&B. We were very impressed with the people and facilities and ended up spending more time than we had planned. After your visit you can even upload your photos to Facebook, Twitter and Instagram using #BoysTownVillage.

CombatCritic Gives Boys Town 10 Bombs Out Of 10 And A Spot On CombatCritic's "Wall Of Fame" ... Bombs Are Good!

Read Reviews By CombatCritic:

Yelp - "Elite '14/'15"

TripAdvisor - "Top Contributor" 

Tabelog - "Official Judge (Bronze)

Zomato - "Super Foodie"

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Tabelog Reviewer CombatCriticView my food journey on Zomato!

Title: Father Flanagan's Boys Town: Still Helping Wayward Boys ... And Girls

Key Words: Father Flanagan, Boys Town, boys, town, girls, school, orphan, orphans, youth, Omaha, NE, Nebraska, TravelValue, travel, value, restaurant, menu, review, Yelp, TripAdvisor

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